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Sunday, March 27, 2011

54mm - Now that's a scale for Wargaming!

The family and I spent 3 wonderful days with my parents in the mountains of North Carolina near the little town of Brevard. Whenever we visit, we always make a trip to O. P. Taylor's, the coolest Toy Store on the Planet. I usually spend most of my time checking out the trains, race sets and of course - the toy soldiers. The O. P. Taylor store in Brevard carries several ranges of 54mm scale figures, including a well stocked inventory of W. Britain figures.
American Civil War Medical Set
The figures are nicely displayed in the store with terrain accessories; I just wish that I had brought my camera. Thank goodness there is an internet so I can share these beautifully painted miniatures.

American Revolutionary War
Though fun to look at, the figures are out of my price range for collecting and gaming. That didn't prevent me from getting a catalog though!

Rorkes Drift

As I looked at the figures in the catalog and online, I started thinking about the "first" wargaming rules published - Little Wars by the famous author, H. G. Wells. The full title of the book is: Little Wars: a game for boys from twelve years of age to one hundred and fifty and for that more intelligent sort of girl who likes boys' games and books. Wells, a known pacifist, published these rules in 1913 and they were played with 54mm W. Britain figures. The full text is a delight to read as Wells provides his philosophy in his writing and gives a description of the game from the view of one of the Generals in the battle "relating" his memoirs. Little Wars can be found on the web at Project Gutenberg. Though I am not interested right now in purchasing and painting 54mm figures, I did find a great site that has affordable miniatures in 54mm: All The Kings Men. Their current ranges are the Napoleonic Wars 1812 - 1815, The War of 1812 in America and The American Revolution. They also have a set of rules, appropriately called, All The Kings Men (ATKM) available free for download on their site or available for $10.00 for a hard copy set with summary card. All the King's Men Toy Soldiers, LLC is owned and operated by Ken Cliffe. Ken is a regular at conventions - I have seen many photos of the great games he has put on that showcase his figures and rules.
Picture from the ATKM website of a French and Indian Game put on at Cold Wars 2011

The shirt available from the ATKM website

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